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Free School Fun Run Guide

Free School Fun Run Guide

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Free School Fun Run Guide

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  1. Free School Fun Run Guide

  2. Introduction • This free fun run guide is packed with everything you need to organise a successful event at • your school. • From lesson ideas to the benefits for your school, we’ve created an exhaustive guide to make it easy to organise your school fun run. • Here are just some of the reasons why a school fun run is a • great idea: • They are easy to organise • They get kids actively interested in exercise • They are a great way to raise money for charity • They involve the whole community • They generate publicity for your school • They create lots of extra learning opportunities • And, of course, fun runs are fun!

  3. Setting Up Your School Fun Run • There are four important factors involved in arranging a school fun run. • Pick a suitable site • Pick a suitable date and time • Get relevant permission • Make sure you have relevant insurance • Pick a Suitable Site • If your school has limited sport and play space, choose a safe and suitable area, like a local park near to the school. Remember to check for, and mark out, any uneven ground or other risks prior to the event. If the area seems unsuitable for young children, look elsewhere.

  4. Pick a Suitable Date and Time Try to pick a time that won’t disrupt parents or pupils. Bear meal times in mind, too, especially when dealing with younger children, and remember to encourage children to eat well on the day (perhaps by hosting an energetic breakfast at school). Get Relevant Permission Getting the relevant permission for your event is also critical – once you know where the fun run will take place, you need permission from the relevant authorities and the land owners if appropriate. This will ensure your run doesn’t clash with other events. Be sure to check local authority guidelines relating to sporting events. Make Sure You Have Relevant Insurance Liability insurance is a requirement for your event. Contact an insurance provider to discuss the fun run in more detail to find out the coverage they have available. You may also wish to notify the emergency services of your plans, and plan with staff and volunteers to discuss emergency plans just in case. Your local council may be able to advise on relevant insurers and rules.

  5. Planning the Route • You will need to mark out a suitable route. If your school grounds do not have a running track, you may need to mark one out with cones or tape. • You also need to plan your route around the age of your pupils. • The English Schools Athletic Association does not allow cross country races of more than 1,500m for year five children, and 2,000m for year six. • The Fell Runners Association also limits the distance over which children can compete in fell races: • Six to eight years: ½ mile • Nine to ten years: 1 mile • 11 to 12 years: 2 miles • 13 to 14 years: 3 miles • 15 to 16 years: 4 miles

  6. Depending on the size of your school and the event, there are four recommended track routes: • Circular route • Horseshoe route • Point to point • Indoor • Circular Route • A typical running track with the same start/end point. This is handy for smaller events, as you’ll be able to organise the start and finish easily. You will also need fewer volunteers on hand to manage the event. Just remember to keep volunteers near the starting areas to make sure there is no bottlenecking Track Routes

  7. Horseshoe Route A U-shaped route with clear start and end zones. If your school is a bit bigger, or you have a big playing field or park nearby, a horseshoe route is easy to lay out, as the start and finish will be quite close to each other, much like the circular route. Point to Point Relay-style running between two markers a set distance apart. While this type of route will cut down the possibility of congestion amongst the children, it will need more volunteers on hand to help. Indoor As this is the UK, rain and bad weather are always a possibility. Bearing that in mind, if you have to move the event indoors because of rain, you can organise groups so pupils take turns round a circular indoor track, or measure out a round figure such as 20 metres, or 30 metres, and give the students a point to point between the two.

  8. More Considerations • If your fun run venue is off-site, make sure there is access to toilets, and facilities for disabled • people too. • Access to water is essential, as hydration is a crucial part • of exercise. • Here’s where Angel Springs can help: we’ve provided free donations of water for hundreds of fun runs, charity challenges and half-marathons, and would love to be involved with your school fun run. More on this later. • You will also need to keep in mind: • Are there any litter bins on site? • Is it away from a busy road? • What are the risk assessments involved?

  9. How many volunteers? Depending on how many children are taking part, you may need up to eight volunteers to help organise the event, and anything between 10 and 30 for the event itself. You’ll need people to assist with the warm ups and warm downs, someone to work out the laps, and also someone to hand out snacks and water to the pupils on the day itself. The fun run will require parental permission, which you can gain from a letter containing a registration form.

  10. Registration / Check-In You will need to set up a registration table in the vicinity of the starting line. This is to ensure you have everyone in attendance, and no strays! It is probably wise to have between two and four volunteers working this table to register the participants as they arrive. Warming Up Due to the level of activity involved, it is recommended that the children involved take part in a range of different warm up exercises prior to the event itself. This will ensure they are suitably prepared, and reduces the chances of injury. On the Day A 30-second repetition of these exercises is recommended.

  11. Policeman’s Bend Stand upright with feet together and with arms clasped behind the back. Flex knees to lower the upper body down before returning to the start position. (Keep the back and upper body upright and straight). Marching on the Spot Raise and lower arms and legs to perform a marching action without moving off your position. Pumping the Tyre Stand on left leg and simulate the pumping action required to inflate the tyre by means of a foot pump with your right leg. Then change legs. Reach for the Sky Stand upright with feet together. Reach upwards with hands as high as you can. Side Bends Stand with feet shoulder width apart and hands on hips. Lean to the left and right alternately without bouncing and keeping the shoulders up and back.

  12. Tips for the Fun Run Itself Children should wear appropriate footwear and clothing for the fun run. Make this clear in any material you send to parents in the run-up to the event. Kids should be encouraged to drink water before and after exercise to avoid dehydration. After they have completed the run, children should carry out a number of cool-down activities to help return their bodies gradually to a comfortable activity level. Children with a known medical condition should be monitored by staff.

  13. Dividing children into a number of groups can help with organisation. By starting at different points of the track, you can count each time a child does a lap for their team, marked perhaps with a series of gold star stickers, elastic band bracelets or a scoreboard. If using running laps or shuttles, you may wish to have several staged starts to help you manage the event safely and successfully. Go for a set time target, rather than laps. Remember to include a cool down lap. After running, be sure each child has a cool bottle of water and a snack in order to recuperate. Based on four groups, each mini event should be completed within about an hour.

  14. If you decide to raise money for a local charity, it’s easy to set up a Just Giving page to allow parents, pupils and the community to pitch in with sponsorship for the run.   Sponsorship lets you set up a direct debit-based sponsorship page. The nominated charity will also be able to reclaim the basic rate tax on the donation under the Gift Aid scheme from the Inland Revenue.

  15. How to set up your own sponsorship web page on If you have already registered previously, use the email you used to register, along with the password you selected with the account. If you haven’t registered previously, select the “No - I’m new” option. Next, click the ‘Make your Page’ button. If you haven’t registered yet, you will be required to provide some information on yourself. After entering your details, click ‘Continue’ and you can then create a personalised sponsorship page. Click on ‘Make Your Page’, then choose the type of event. You will need to enter a web address and a name for your sponsorship page, a target amount for sponsorship, a special greeting, and a thank you message to be emailed to all sponsors when they make a donation. You can also upload a photo from your PC, or use one provided by Click the ‘Continue’ button to see a preview of your page. To complete the page, click the ‘I am Happy with my Changes’ button. You will shortly be sent a confirmation email from that will include the web address for your new sponsorship page. You can email this on to your potential sponsors, link to it from the school’s website or social media profiles, and use it in any media activity.

  16. Other Tips Don’t overcomplicate things; look to get everything into place as quickly and efficiently as possible. If this is your first fun run, focus on organising the basics first. Don’t aim for a London Marathon-style spectacle of sport. Just aim to get everyone involved, and raise lots of money for a good cause! Once you’ve completed your first fun run, build on your success next year! Calculating your budget is essential. So is sticking to it! Delegate aspects of event management and use sensible deadlines so that you can manage things in small chunks, rather than trying to do everything at once.

  17. Most importantly, remember you're doing this for charity and ultimately, it’s designed to be fun! Keep an event file, so that everything is in one place. If you are off sick, can someone cover the event just by reading your file? A few days before the event, telephone the venue (if you’re using one), volunteers and any suppliers/services to confirm the booking and clarify the details.

  18. Encouraging Participation Communication is vital. If you have a school newsletter, use it to publicise the event. Use the school website, flyers, and letters home to parents and guardians, to ensure everyone understands the concept and purpose of the fun run. Motivation is a huge part of any sporting activity or charity event, so writing a letter to invite local sports clubs, chefs or health professionals to come in and give a talk in assembly or class is a great way of adding further educational value to the event.

  19. Children Children will usually be the most eager to participate in a charity event, as they love something a little unusual or different to their normal routine. Best of all, as running doesn’t involve any complex rules or technical skills, children of any age and abilitycan participate. Throw some potential prizes into the mix – perhaps certificates to commemorate their effort? Include all children, regardless of physical ability. If pupils require wheelchairs or have physical difficulties, plan ways to ensure they can still be part of the team on the day. Parents Parents are essential to the organisation of any event, and their support will be vital, whether it be cheering their kids on during the event, or as a volunteer. One option may be to open the fun run for both pupils and parents – ensuring the whole family is engaged with the project.

  20. Teachers • Getting fellow teachers on board will obviously be vital to the success of your event. What better way to encourage teacher participation than to incorporate key aspects of a fun run into classes? • Here are just some ideas: • Biology • Create lessons focussing on how the body works, with a focus on muscles, blood circulation. • PE • Suitable warm up activities for an event, healthy eating. • Nutrition • Look at suitable foods for a healthy lifestyle – how do foods help you recover energy? Study the role of water and hydration in a healthy, active lifestyle.

  21. English • School newspaper or blog projects are a great way to follow the build-up to the fun run. Remember to share any reports with your chosen charity! • PSE • Focus on the purpose of charity in general, the role of your chosen charity, and the Olympic legacy.

  22. Volunteers With a route and date confirmed for your charity fun run, it’s time to get other people involved. How you do this depends on how big you want the event to be, but make sure you give yourself plenty of time and your participants plenty of notice. Your event will be even more successful if you can quickly spread the word. The more people that know about your event, the more successful it will be, and the more money you’ll raise. One of the most effective ways to generate interest is to make eye-catching posters, flyers and signs advertising the event and distribute these around your local area. Make sure they are striking, easy to read and include all the necessary details and contact information. Creating a press release for the local newspaper is also a great idea. We’ve included a template in this pack to make this straightforward. Be sure to request a photographer on the day of the fun run, too.

  23. Race Day Checklist • Water Station Set-Up • Water • Plain Cups • Table • Trash Bag • First Aid Kit • Course Marking • Delineators • Cones • All Signage • Mile Markers • 2-way Radios • Flour • Flags • Barricades • Goody Bag Set-Up • Goody Bags • T-shirts • Bars • Flyers • Table • Tents • PA System • Mic • Cord • Check-In and Regular Set-Up • Safety Pins • Banner(s) • Scissors • Administration Box [Safety Pins, Cash Box (3) (Change, Extra Pens), Clipboards] • Other • Paper Towels • Trash Bags • Awards • Megaphone(s) • Generator • Whistle/horn/bell • (to start the race)

  24. Free Water for Your FunRun Angel Springs can provide FREE water for your fun run, so runners stay refreshed, and you don’t have to spend vital funds on water bottles. For more information, call 0845 370 1177 or visit

  25. ____ School Fun Run Raises Money For _____ Big hearted children from ____________ School have raised £______ for charity after taking part in a fun run. ____ children from ____ year groups took part in the run, held at _____ on _____. A number of parents and volunteers were on hand to cheer on the eager young participants. ________, head teacher/teacher, who organised the event, _______, said: “It was great to see so many children from our school hit the tracks and raise an amazing ________ for _________. “We’d like to thank all the children, their parents and the many volunteers who made this event. Everyone did really well and should be proud of what was achieved on the day.” Press Release

  26. Wolverhampton-based water cooler supplier, Angel Springs, helped keep the children fresh during their activities by providing ____ free bottles of water to keep the runners hydrated. Angel Springs’ commercial director, John Murphy, said: “As part of our Free Water for Charity initiative, we’ve supported hundreds of charity events with water donations. “When __________ School contacted us about supplying some water bottles for their fun run, we were more than happy to help.It was great to play a small but important part in this event, and we hope the children have learned lots about exercise and nutrition as part of their preparation. __-year-old ______ was delighted after completing the run. He/She said: “<insert quote here>” ENDS For more information, contact _______ at ________ School on _____ or email _________.

  27. Press Release Tips: The local press usually prefer to use their own photographer, to ensure a quality photo, so bear this in mind when contacting them. Get in touch with your local newspaper news desk to discuss the event with them. They may be happy to send a reporter out to help pupils work on their school newspaper report, and will certainly be interested in your event. The personal touch is important too: call the newsdesk directly, rather than emailing, to make sure they are aware of your event.

  28. Please feel free to distribute this guide on your own website, but we respectfully request you ask permission before making changes.